There are also sorts of things you must consider if you are going to go for a run/bike/swim/walk when you are pregnant: do you have clothes/gear that fit your pregnant belly so you aren’t weirding people out with your naked baby bump? Are there restrooms along the route that you can take advantage of in case of an emergency? Are the weather conditions such that they would make your tired, morning-sick self even more miserable? And perhaps the most challenging questions of all: do you you have other children and what are you going to do with them while you run/bike/swim/walk?
And that is where the workout videos come in. You can wear your sports bra and yoga pants while you do them in the comfort of your own living room. You can pause them while you run to the ladies’ room. You can ignore the rain beating on the roof and still get your exercise (plus you can collapse on the couch half way through if you need to). And, if you have kids already, they makean excellent studio audience/workout buddies (when they aren’t climbing under or over you, that is).
So hooray for workout videos!
I have exactly one video that is specifically a workout for a pregnant lady. I used it regularly through both of my previous pregnancies and have leant it out several times. It’s called The Perfect Pregnancy Workout and I recommend it for several reasons:
1. It’s just one lady. I prefer the one-on-one experience.
2. She looks even more pregnant than I do. She’s got to be at least 8 months along. This is encouraging to those who may be nervous about exercising late into the pregnancy.
3. She does some very pregnancy specific things, like labor squats and Kegels. It’s good to have that built in to the workout and as a reminder to do those everyday.
4. There are multiple levels: you can do beginner, intermediate, or advanced versions of different exercises. (Sometimes it is just beginner and advanced.)
5. There are both aerobic and strength-training portions of the video.
6. She has you do a very focused exercise at the end to try to prepare your mind for enduring through contractions. It’s pretty simple, but I think it is a good thing to think about.
And the one thing I don’t really love: it does require some additional equipment, things that you should have around the house but may not: a chair (easy enough), a step of some sort (also fairly easy), some big pillows, and hand weights. Not a big deal. I’ve been creative with the equipment, though, because, oddly enough, we don’t have a step or hand weights.
Having said that, I haven’t done The Perfect Pregnancy Workout at all this pregnancy. I’m still frienemies with Baron Baptiste and his Long and Lean Yoga Practice from the RSBC Challenge back in February. I just love/hate the feeling of my thighs burning so much that I can’t seem to let go. Plus I feel like it’s really doing great things for my glutes, which is supposed to help keep the pelvic floor tight. But I can’t do all the moves any more and more of them are getting difficult as my belly grows, so I may be bidding the Baron farewell until August pretty soon.
I also asked my friend Jolena about some of the workout videos she uses. She’s 20 weeks pregnant now and has a toddler, so videos have come in handy for her. She’s been working out with Jillian Michaels via The 30-day Shred (good for quick workouts, Jolena says), and the Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism (a good longer, more aerboic workout). No More Trouble Zones is good for pregnancy because it has lots of squats and lunges, and the 6 Week Six-Pack was good for the 1st trimester, until her belly popped out. Some of the more pregnancy specific videos Jolena recommends are Prenatal Yoga with Shiva Rae and Summer Sanders’ Prenatal Workout.
If you have a favorite workout video you’ve used through pregnancy (whether it is pregnancy-specifc or not), please share! Post it in the comments and tell us a little bit about why you like it.